Origins of World War II – Book Review
Essay submitted by scott
World War II was much more than battles, statistics, politics, and opinions. The things
that contributed to its beginning, what happened during the war, and the effects of
the war are still being debated and discussed. Patrick Finney assembles some of the
best writings for a number of subjects relating to World War II. First the reader is
introduced to the basic views, where they originated, and why they are still discussed
today. The truth is, even fifty years after the end of the war, it is still very much part
of our lives.
Finney’s first collection of readings are written on the subject of what contributes to
the war. Two of the authors have very different opinions on Chamberlain, and they
focus on his actions preluding the war. There is also an writing describing the French
during this period, and finally there are two authors whom debate about the state of
Germany at this time. After the conditions of Great Britian, France, and Germany have
been addressed, Finney explains the goals, economics, strategies, and policies of the
countries that contributed to the breakout of war. The last section addresses the
topics of the Spanish Civil War and its effects on World War II, what happened at
Munich and how it effected Hitler in the long run, the strategies and policies regarding a
There are all types of information including lesson plans, articles and news. BBC origin is a British Broadcasting Corporation. Established in 1922,London. The founders of BBC are John Reith and George Villers. BBC purpose is to “enrich peopleʼs lives with programs and services that inform, educate and entertain.” The values of the source are that it has beneﬁts of hindsight; this is because they ...
German attack on Poland, and finally the major points of the war and the post-war
The selection of essays and writings were excellent for supporting the theme Finney
was aspiring to fulfill. His goal in writing was to represent the major powers World War
II and keep the attention balanced between all of the involved countries.
The credibility of the writers involved in this book appeared to be very good. Simply by
listing their credentials in Finney’s commentaries, one can assume that they are
respectable. Most of the authors have written extensively on the topic that Finney
publishes in his book, therefore you know that they researched more than what was
written in Finney’s book. Since most of Finney’s commentary consisted of
interpretations and explanations of the readings that would follow, there was not a
great deal of facts to be misrepresented by Finney himself.
The commentaries were a excellent was to start off the readings. Finney provided an
understanding of what the writer was going to say, not only in support of what they
were going to say, but also provided some comments on opposing opinions. He also
kept them completely unbiased, which helped you to form a decision that was devised
on your own.
Although the commentaries that Finney provided were unbiased and contained great
content, they could be confusing to a reader inexperienced in World War II politics and
language. For example, on page 117 he said that “Knox does not find the notion of
equidistance persuasive.” There is no context that allows the reader to determine what
that means, and the definition of “equidistant” does not make sense when applied.
There are a number of situations where a reader can be easily confused by Finney’s use
of words and unexplained backgrounds.
The book as a whole explained a minimal amount of information regarding actual actions
and facts, and focused on controversial topics. This method keeps the interest of
someone that has a solid understanding of what happened in the years preceding World
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War II. The writings Finney chose for his book were largely concentrated on evaluating
countries and people. This could easily provide a reader that is new to World War II
with being convinced that the opinion of the essay is the only opinion.
By writing a book that has a large number of different writings from different authors,
there is enough written by an author to give you a complete picture, but not enough to
drag out a topic. This is by far much better than history books and essays that provide
so much detail about a single issue. One example of where this is useful is in the
discussion of Chamberlain by Dilks and Aster. Finney explains the backgrounds of these
two writers so that the reader knows what type of background they have. It is not
necessary for the reader to know as much about Chamberlain as the writer does, and
Finney’s method of giving two perspectives helps a reader to form their own ideas and
Another example of where varying writings is utilized is the debate between Mason and
Overy. Although the debate format took away some of the focus on simply explaining
and idea and giving facts to back them up, they were still able to get their point
across. The varying formats of writing styles also sustained the readers attention more
than simply reading the same author with same format for 450 pages.
As well as the book was put together, there is only a small audience that would benefit
from it. Some of the writers in the book do a great job of making an unbiased opinion,
and Finney is among this group. The other writers are wasting more of your time than
needed if you are not already fluent in World War II history. The most useful
information is simply explaining what happened in history, and letting the audience
conclude why. However, for supplemental reading for those that have become familiar
with the history of World War II, this book will provide at least some information that
was overlooked. For someone to use this book as a way of learning the origin, or cause
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of World War II, there are better books out there.